Masterchef Australia Season 3: Where Are The Contestants Now?

In the sizzling season 3 of ‘MasterChef Australia,’ the culinary stage was set ablaze in May 2011 on Network Ten. The dynamic trio of judges, George Calombaris, Gary Mehigan, and Matt Preston, returned with an extra dash of excitement as they welcomed the talented chef Matt Moran to the mix. Viewers were treated to a feast for the senses, with the tantalizing aroma of success and the bitter taste of defeat lingering in the air. The charismatic blend of seasoned judges, new faces, and a diverse array of contestants made the season a delectable spectacle, leaving audiences hungry for more and eagerly anticipating the next culinary masterpiece.

Kate Bracks is Now a Pastoral Care Coordinator

Kate Bracks, the victorious contestant of ‘MasterChef Australia’ season 3, realized her culinary dreams by claiming the title. Post-victory, she shared aspirations of owning a bed-and-breakfast, inspired by past winners like Adam Liaw and Julie Goodwin. Despite acknowledging the evolving nature of plans, she remained rooted in her desire for a Bed and Breakfast, considering it a gift and skill she could align with her family life. In an interview with Woman’s Day magazine, she expressed apprehension about the idea of a cookbook. In subsequent seasons, Bracks stayed connected with the MasterChef family, appearing as a guest judge in season 4 and participating in a ‘Special All-Stars’ season for charity.

The culinary maestro showcased her expertise in season 6 as a guest judge. In 2012, she contributed to the culinary world with her cookbook, ‘The Sweet Life: Desserts from Australia’s MasterChef,’ a testament to her culinary prowess. Beyond the confines of the kitchen, Bracks engaged in cooking demonstrations nationwide and became a prominent face in corporate advertising and fundraising campaigns. Her culinary journey extended globally, as she opened the Bengaluru Marriott Hotel in India as a celebrity guest. She also graced events like the Noosa Food and Wine Festival, leaving her mark by cooking on the main exhibit at The Australian National Field Days.

After fulfilling her contractual obligations post-winning, Bracks seamlessly transitioned back to her role as a teacher. In 2016, she joined Kinross Wolaroi School as a Teacher and School Chaplain for Primary levels, dedicating six years to the institution. Furthering her educational journey, she embarked on a new chapter in 2021 by joining Orange Anglican Grammar School as a Pastoral Care Coordinator. Nestled in Orange, New South Wales, she juggles her professional life while nurturing her family, which has grown to include three children.

Michael Weldon is a Celebrity Chef Today

Season 3 introduced Michael Weldon to the MasterChef stage, and his journey continued in season 12 and season 14, where he sought another chance to showcase his culinary skills. His professional trajectory has been marked by diverse roles, reflecting his versatility in the culinary world. Following the show, he ventured into the burger restaurant and catering business. He became associated with Well Done Food, bringing his culinary flair to Adelaide venues under the Little Miss Group, including the Crabshack, Little Miss Miami, and Little Miss Mexico.

His culinary expertise caught the attention of Coles, where he currently serves as an ambassador and Senior Development Chef. The culinary maestro expanded his presence on television, securing a recurring role on ‘The Cooks Pantry’ cooking show in 2017. Two years later, Michael elevated his profile by co-hosting the cooking show ‘Farm to Fork.’ His culinary prowess extends beyond the screen, as he actively engages in paid partnerships, cooking events, demonstrations, and cooking classes.

His commitment to inclusivity was evident when he traveled to Sydney in February 2024 to support and celebrate the LGBTQIA+ community, showcasing his dedication to diverse culinary experiences. Adding a personal touch to his journey, Michael shares his life with his partner, Georgia. In April 2021, news surfaced that Georgia was pregnant, though the couple has yet to make an official announcement about the arrival of their baby.

Alana Lowes is Now a Recipe Developer and Food Stylist

Alana Lowes has carved a niche for herself as a writer, presenter, and actress. Her endeavors reflect a commitment to various causes and a flourishing career in the culinary and media landscape. As a national ambassador for the Cancer Council Australia, Alana is dedicated to raising awareness for women’s cancers. Her involvement extends to the Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Society of Queensland, where she serves as an ambassador.

Her foray into television includes hosting the food and travel series, ‘A Taste of Travel,’ featured on Channel Ten, Australia. Professionally, she is associated with Brisbane Quarter and lends her expertise to Muval, a Moving & Storage Service. Beyond her roles, she wears many culinary hats, serving as a Recipe Developer, Food Stylist, and Food Photographer. Alana’s written contributions include articles, photography, and video content for The Flying Foodie portal on Virgin Australia’s travel inspiration website.

Her presence extends to Channel 7’s ‘Weekender,’ where she presents culinary delights. She has made guest appearances on various shows, collaborating with renowned chefs. As a regular food columnist for ninemsn food, she shares her culinary insights. In her personal life, she finds joy in her marriage to Rob O’Leary and two beautiful children, Florence and Walter. The blend of her culinary expertise, media contributions, and advocacy work showcases a dynamic and multifaceted professional journey.

Dani Venn Runs a Podcast Today

Dani Venn, a top contestant of ‘MasterChef Australia’ season 3, has taken her culinary talents across the globe. She has done wonders from hosting foodie retreats in Bali and Sri Lanka to cooking for events ranging from intimate dinner parties for 400 people in Mumbai. She launched the podcast ‘Falling For You,’ where she interviews inspiring guests who have changed their lives. She is a regular guest on Studio 10, cooking live on air with her kids, and has appeared on shows like ‘Everyday Gourmet’ and ‘Farm to Fork.’

In 2020, she released a range of Sri Lankan-inspired simmer sauces in collaboration with Coles. Despite her professional success, Dani faced a setback in her personal life in 2020. She was shocked when she discovered that the hackers stole $250,000 from the proceeds of their home sale which were later recovered. The same year, she got separated from her husband and now lives a single life.

Ellie Paxton-Hall Owns a Catering Company

Ellie Paxton-Hall, initially, worked at Rockpool Bar & Grill under Neil Perry’s guidance. She embarked on an internship with the ACICIS business program in 2015 and later founded her catering company, Elpax, in 2016. She got married to her boyfriend, Jim, in 2019, and they welcomed their daughter, Adelaide Jennifer Ann Hall, in 2020.

Hayden Quinn is a Successful Business Owner 

Hayden Quinn, the surfer and writer, has made a name for himself as the creator, host, and executive producer of ‘Taste of Australia.’ He participated in various seasons, including the ‘Special All-Star’ season for charity, and has served as a guest judge. Hayden has written two cookbooks, ‘Dish It Up’ and ‘Surfing the Menu,’ and is involved in several ventures, including Studio Maybe, The Cube Gym, and FIZZ. He married American model Jax Raynor in 2023.

Billy Law is a Digital Creator Today

Billy Law, now a digital creator, has immersed himself in beekeeping and serves as an ambassador for Malaysia Kitchen Australia. In 2012, he published the cookbook ‘Have You Eaten?’In 2022, he got married to his longtime partner, Peter Harris. They now live a simple rural life in country Victoria with their dog, Lucy.

Sún Etheridge is Now a Digital Communications Officer

Sún Etheridge currently stands as the Labor candidate for the Paddington ward in the Brisbane City Council. After graduating in 2020 with a Graduate Certificate in Business/Commerce from Queensland University of Technology, she is now pursuing a Bachelor of Law at the same institution and is set to graduate in 2026. As an active volunteer in local and environmental groups, she serves as the Vice President of the Petrie Terrace State School Parents and Citizens Association. Previously, she collaborated with clients like Elyse Crane Design, DIViN Group, The Babywearing Practice, and Bareknuckle Books until 2016, handling communications and writing projects. Since 2022, she has been the Digital Communications Officer at the Queensland Nurses and Midwives’ Union.

Peter Vickery Claims to be a Kitchen Garden Creator

Peter Vickery, after the show, fulfilled his sea change dream by moving to the Hunter Valley and working at Muse restaurant. He also freelanced in cooking demonstrations for a short duration. While his blog, City Boy No More, is no longer active, Peter has maintained a private stance in his life since 2013.

Mat Beyer is Now a Senior Digital Media Specialist

Mat Beyer is now a senior digital media specialist at Spinach, a full-service advertising agency. He previously worked as head of digital marketing and development at Pragmatic Education Group. 

Kumar Pereira is an Author Today

Kumar Pereira, who joined the ‘Special All-Star’ season for charity, continues his passion for cooking, writing, and gardening. He released ‘Kumar’s Family Cookbook’ in 2013 and published illustrated cooking suggestion cards, Paletteables, in 2014. He co-owned Hopper Kadé in 2016. Father of two sons, Kumar has been happily married for 40 years and also engages in fundraisers and charity work.

Danielle Dixon Works at The Institute of Culinary Excellence

Danielle Dixon completed her Certificate III in Commercial Cookery in 2012 and acquired experience at top Australian restaurants like Quay, Rockpool, and Aria. She eventually became the head chef at Bucci Brisbane, dedicating four years to the kitchen. Since 2018, she has been serving as Executive Chef and Head of Studies at the Institute of Culinary Excellence. Alongside her culinary pursuits, she is associated with Gathar and was a 2021 finalist for the VET Teacher or Trainer of the Year category. Married to Nate Woods, her journey exemplifies culinary expertise and educational contributions.

Craig Young is Now a Cellist

Craig Young is now a cellist with the Queensland Symphony Orchestra, continuing his musical career, orchestrating for orchestras, and working with the Queensland Show Choir. He also applied his culinary skills, catering events, designing celebration cakes, and producing cooking/music videos. Since 2018, he has collaborated with songwriter Donna Dyson for their label Spotty Kites, producing music and shows for children. Craig, married to Gary, has maintained a busy and varied career.

Adam Bowen Continues to be a Scuba Diver

Initially quitting ‘MasterChef Australia’ season 3, Adam Bowen discovered a new passion as the owner of a prominent Scubapro dealership. In 2013, he faced a major cycling accident resulting in 14 fractures in his backbone, but he overcame doctors’ predictions that he would never walk again and now embraces diving and freediving.

Shannon Jennings is a Makeup Artist Today

Shannon Smyth, now Shannon Jennings, landed a lucrative apprenticeship at Absynthe restaurant on the Gold Coast post-elimination. She later joined Kindyhub in 2015 as a food writer and then, transitioned to become a qualified makeup artist and hairstylist. Her creative journey extends to magazines like Lucy’s Magazine and New Idea. She married Shane Jennings, has two children, and continues to thrive in her multifaceted career.

Rachel McSweeney Got a Hospitality Traineeship After The Show 

Image Credit: Trinity College/Facebook

Rachel McSweeney secured a hospitality traineeship at Fraser’s Restaurant in 2011, right after the show. She also led cooking demonstrations at Trinity College in 2012. Currently, she is living a private life with her husband Kevin, and three children – Emily, Daniel, and Cameron, by remaining out of the public limelight.

Arena Dunn Co-Owns an Organic Wholefoods Store and Cafe

Arena Dunn, now Arena B Walton, delved into modeling after the show. She is now the co-owner of Dunn & Walton, an Organic Whole Foods Store & Cafe, and also showcases her passion for travel on her dedicated account named, Sea to Soil. She is happily married to Travis Walton with two kids – Vann Walton and Quincy Walton.

Jay Huxley Owns a Hospitality Group

In 2017, 9 News reported that former ‘MasterChef’ contestant Jay Huxley received a good behavior bond for assaulting an employee at his Penrith restaurant. He admitted yelling at staff amid business stress. Transitioning to car sales in 2017, he expressed remorse, vowing a return to the culinary world. True to his words, Huxley is now the owner of Hux Hospitality Group and Hux Mobile Catering. Besides, he enjoys fishing and is a father to Elliott, Darcy, and Hugo from a previous marriage. Currently, he is enjoying his relationship with Bonnie.

Andrew Henderson Lives in Adelaide

Andrew Henderson is actively involved in working with at-risk youth and shares his culinary expertise under the name Beer Garden Brewing in Adelaide, South Australia.

Cleo Kerameas is an Assistant Store Manager Today

Following her ‘MasterChef’ stint, Cleo Kerameas contributed to the panel of Women Say Something – I Do, I Don’t, in 2011. Subsequently, in 2015, she assumed the role of Business Development & Account Manager at Sub-Zero Group Australia. For a two-year tenure until 2022, Kerameas held the position of General Manager – Commercial at Snaidero Sydney. Since 2022, she has taken on the role of Assistant Store Manager at Winning Appliances.

Chelsea Fammartino Works at a Menswear Brand

After the show, Chelsea Fammartino ventured into apparel and clothing with the kids’ apron brand Baleno. She is currently an Area Manager at Calibre, a menswear brand. She married Adrian La Pira in 2022 and is a mother of two daughters.

Seamus Ashley is Thriving as a Designer

Post-show, Seamus Ashley shared the stress he experienced during his ‘MasterChef’ journey. Transitioning to web design, he crafted websites for various restaurants in 2011. In 2013, Ashley showcased his culinary skills at a Pop-up event in Melbourne’s Ceres environmental park. Until 2014, he served as a web designer at Seamus & Sons. Progressing to become a UX designer at Maythorpe in 2017, he then spent 8 years as the director at XO Studios until 2022. This diverse career trajectory highlights his evolution from culinary exploration to impactful roles in the web and UX design industry.

Alex Glasson Featured in a Music Video

Alex Glasson, post-‘MasterChef,’ designed an automated cooking machine. He also appeared in the music video “Morning” by Saviour in 2013. Choosing a more private life thereafter, he continues to explore the world in Melbourne.

Tom Rutledge is The Founder and CEO at HelloFresh

Image Credit: Hello Fresh

In 2011, Tom Rutledge initiated Mr. Perkins & Co., an experimental online food retail endeavor. Subsequently, he introduced HelloFresh Australia & New Zealand in 2012, a pioneering food delivery service specializing in convenient, health-conscious meals. The company, having amassed approximately $200 million in funding, has now prioritized expanding its warehousing and marketing efforts. Rutledge actively shares insights on their dedicated website, featuring recipes, blogs, and meal kit information, and illustrates their commitment to fostering a dynamic and engaging culinary community.

Paul Lombardi is Now a Travel Agent

Paul Lombardi, a former pilot who withdrew from the competition due to work commitments, has transitioned to become a travel agent in 2019. He is now working at TUI, the world’s biggest tourism brand. Paul lives with his beautiful wife, Sophie Lombardi, and two sons in Falmouth, Cornwall.

Read More: Masterchef Australia Season 2: Where Are They Now?